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Leapfrogging Botswana’s market to energy-efficient refrigerators and distribution transformers



Botswana's energy capacity is thermal, mainly coal-fired, with some small diesel generators in rural areas. The bulk of domestic electricity production is generated by the Morupule coal-fired station; 20% is thermal while only 0,1% was from solar energy in 2016. Botswana has no hydro-electric power resources.

In Botswana, 66% of the population have access to electricity. The high level of electrification of Botswana’s households presents significant opportunities for ensuring that new uses of electricity are of the highest level of energy efficiency. Thus, while challenges remain associated with income levels and rural electrification, encouraging adoption of more energy efficient equipment and products amongst users is an important policy opportunity. Mitigating the potential for growth in demand will also help the country achieve its energy diversification goals while limiting the need for importing electricity to meet peak power demand. Due to other competing highly prioritized agendas such as electrification, food, water, housing and other more pressing, energy efficiency is not seen as a primary priority in Botswana. Botswana electric charges are subsidised by the government, which result in longer payback periods for energy savings projects or energy efficient technologies than if full utility costs were charged. This negatively impacts the sales of higher efficiency units, compared to their cheaper but less efficient competitors.

Like several other countries in the region, Botswana has an energy policy in draft, but this is at a very broad level, does not address any technologies, does not have any specific regulations and provides no enforcement mandate. Despite the limitations noted, including low population density and low incomes, Botswana has much to gain by adopting energy efficient standards and technologies.

CTCN Support

  • Mandatory Minimum energy performance standards and labeling schemes for refrigerators and distribution transformers;
  • National policy roadmap and enabling environment for implementation of standards and label for refrigerators and distribution transformers;
  • Appropriate financing mechanisms to accelerate deployment of energy efficient refrigerators and distribution transformers;
  • Strengthened national capacity to develop standards and labels for other appliances in future.

Expected Results

This technical assistance will strengthen the existing policies and regulatory frameworks through the adoption of national testing standards (testing method, to be adapted from the international IEC standards and translated into national standards), the adoption of mandatory Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS), as well as adoption of High Energy Performance Standards (HEPS) and labelling scheme, the design of consumer awareness campaigns, and capacity building on finance mechanisms. This technical assistance will result in Botswana having a regulatory framework and an agreed MEPS and labelling scheme for Refrigerators and Distribution transformers.

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